Liam Byrne

Lords may ambush plans to limit benefits

Plans to impose an annual limit on benefit payments could be ambushed in the House of Lords following a warning from within Whitehall that the move risked making 40,000 families homeless.

Axe Wednesday: The future starts here

Today's cuts are about more than just today's problems. Hamish McRae on why they signal a new era of lower ambitions for government and a shrinking public sector

Tories will not raise national insurance

The Conservative Party will today promise to spare businesses and people on low and middle-incomes from the rise in national insurance contributions (NICs) due next year.

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The Lord who put the bounce into Brown

Lord Mandelson says his new role at Gordon Brown's side is to make the Brownites and Blairites laugh together again. Others insist the 'Prince of Darkness' is no jester, but really the new Deputy Prime Minister, reports Andrew Grice

The Big Question: Has the divide between Britain's social classes

The Government published a document yesterday which made the startling claim that, after a long period of social stagnation, British society has become socially mobile again. For 30 years, according to Getting On, Getting Ahead, the paper prepared by the Cabinet Office's strategy unit, there was no appreciable movement between social classes, although society as a whole became better off. Children born in relative poverty left school with fewer qualifications than children from more comfortable homes, and went into low-paid work. But since 2000, the Government claims, that general pattern has changed for the better.